Monday, December 31, 2007

Best New Year's Eve ever.

Not that Kinsley hasn't already posted this or anything, but it's just better with the video. :) Now that I've conquered YouTube, and informed it that it will do what I tell it to, not the other way around, I thought I should end the year with something New Year's Evey.

Once I get the new camera acclimated to its job (which is to take pictures for me, not to make me figure out how to take pictures), you can see some rocking photos of my weekend at the Monkeybean Mansion. :)

In other fantastic news, I bought a plane ticket to New York today! The Tulane girls are headed to the Big Apple in February. :) Yahoo!

Y'all be good tonight, and have a very happy beginning to 2008.

Friday, December 28, 2007


Wow, YouTube hates me. Some people (they know who they are) had best really appreciate this gesture, because it's made me want to throw my computer through a window. Now we remember why Sarah normally just links to videos! :) More Christmas spiritishness soon, I promise.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Makin' it.

You know that it's important when the Times cares about it, right? Like when my cousin got married.

No, seriously. Etsy made the Times today. It's an interesting article, and a long one (this isn't the Macon Telegraph, after all).

My weekend did not make the Times social page, but did include 2 parties, including one hosted by the owner of my favorite East Atlanta bookshop; the children's Christmas pageant at church (complete with "sheep" covered in polyester pillow stuffing); an unexpected trip to the zoo (in the rain!); and a night of scrapbooking in Decatur. Not bad for 72 hours.

Tomorrow I'm off to Plains - no President this time, though I did see him last Wednesday (whole blog post in the near future) - just in time to experience winter in Southwest Georgia. I know you're jealous.

Happy Monday.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Paying it forward.

These words came today, from the Feather, living it up in the Big Apple. Some of them are very involved old stories, so I won't bore you with the details, but suffice it to say it made me seriously cry & be very grateful for her. So, in the interest of the season, here are some wishes for you:

smiles, hugs, hot chocolate, chocolate kisses, mistletoe, cozy slippers, ladybugs, blue boxes, butterflies, peace, traveling mercies, cheese fries, milkshakes, Camellia Grill burgers, Newberry-medal books, whiskers on kittens, Mardi Gras beads, snowflakes, belly laughs, creek wading, notebooks filled with the best parts of great lectures, hot fudge, red wine, Milktray, a bridge in Prague, butterscotch lifesavers, handicrafts, prayers & starlight.

Because really, y'all, if one quarter of this came true for one quarter of the planet, it'd be an amazing day. :)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

New residents

We have new residents here at the Little Yellow House. They arrived this afternoon. Unfortunately, like me, they seem to be dressed according to the calendar, not the actual outside weather. While I'm personally grateful that we haven't just had a miserable ice storm, I think the new residents might have preferred that particular phenomenon.

The new residents did come from a home further south, so it's possible that they THOUGHT they'd be more comfortable here. In order to try to improve their condition, I'm going to let them live in this particular wing of the mansion.

It's still anybody's guess whether or not they'll make it. We do appreciate the confidence of the kind souls who directed them this way. ;)

I spent the day at a scintillating math curriculum/school improvement meeting. Definitely one of those days that lets you understand how some people can go & live in cabins in the wilds of Montana. (Not me, personally, but some people.) We had to do a LONG math task, and I was able to recall functional notation (!), solving for functions (!!), and graphing said functions (!!!). You're thinking, "how does she use this in social studies training?" *crickets chirping* *tumbleweed rolling* *blank stares*

Happy Tuesday - weird weather & all...

Thursday, December 6, 2007


I found these in the cabinet last night when I was putting away the groceries. Yes, we are opening a Twizzlers store - didn't you hear?

On to the embroidery. This first piece is part of a surprise gift, so you don't get to see very much of it. It came out MUCH better than I anticipated, so there may be more of these in the future.

This is the ornament from the Craft Leftovers kit. I heard Kristin's CraftSanity interview, which sent me right over to her Etsy shop to get this! I love it. Everything is thrifted or reused in some way. The felt is an old sweater! This is almost done, just waiting on some additional blanket stitching, which I can now do myself, whoo-hoo!

This one is going to also have a little stick-figure sort of stable off to the left-hand side, but that involves multiple colors of thread, so it'll probably be this weekend before I'm feeling that patient. It is definitely going to be part of a pillow, as is the mystery embroidery up above. I bought my mom a cute Halloween pillow that inspired these, and we already had the tea-dyed fabric, so it seemed like the obvious choice.

In other news, they have installed a stop sign on our street! Very exciting, since it felt like we were living next to the Atlanta Motor Speedway all the time. Since we've actually already done that once, we weren't really feeling the NASCAR-type love. This sign has ALREADY reduced the unnecessary traffic on our street (which is sort of a cut-through), and really slowed things down. We were hoping for a speed bump, but we'll take the stop sign.

(Once you care about things like this, by the way, you know you are OLD.)

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

My newest friend.

This is Andrew. He belongs to Kinsley, Nick, & Ryan. He is really spectacular. He was born early Monday morning, and weighed 9 lbs. 11oz. (That's the size of babies in my crazy Eastern European family, so Kinsley is one brave woman!) I got to meet him last night, and see Monkey & Bean, which was also fantastic. (Photo by Kinsley, titled "Sarah & Andrew" on Snapfish, which is funny since my little brother is also Andrew, so I've been part of that set of names for the last 24-almost-25 years!)

There are a couple of embroidery projects coming down the pipe that you'll probably get to see tomorrow. It's amazing how quickly they're coming together. They are not, however, doing my laundry, which is terribly unfortunate. I'm also trying to find time to make some of these. They seem like they'll be easy enough to whip up, but you never know until you try...

Happy Wednesday!

Sunday, December 2, 2007


The long-awaited trees have been finished & photographed. First up is the black IKEA tree. Lindsey actually had the rather smart idea to put our folk-artish ornaments on it. (And please excuse all these photos - I often fail to plan ahead, so I had to use (GASP) artificial light to get these.) I personally like the way it looks in front of the fireplace.

This is the real aluminum tree Lindsey bought for me last year. Prior to that, we had a silver tinsel tree, which wasn't nearly as pretty (or as cool). Most of these ornaments are vintage, with a few vintage-looking new ones thrown in. Part of the reason for the folk art tree is that those ornaments look kind of ridiculous on this one. Eventually, we might get to have a real tree for our "other" ornaments, but that's way off in the future. When I take this down, you'll get to see the specially engineered holder for this sucker. (Buying one without a stand = $much cheaper$.)

Here are some of my favorite ornaments. The reindeer is a new one this year, bought during the McDonough Christmas Shopping Spree.

And finally, here is the button tree. The buttons were Lindsey's grandmother's, and the fabric is from Kimono of the Month. I went ahead & bought another styrofoam cone, because I'm quite sure I'm going to have to make another one. Soon. ;)

The green fabric you can barely see under the IKEA tree came from the Intown Quilters in "Decatur." (As in practically to 285, so it has a Decatur mailing address, but is nowhere near downtown Decatur.) Now I know what a fabric store is supposed to look like. HOLY COW. All that vintage-inspired/reproduced stuff you yearn for from Reprodepot & Superbuzzy? They have it. Along with rows & rows of batiks, Japanese fabrics, African prints, Amy Butler's patterns... WOW. It's enough to make you want to quit your job & make a quilt. They also have a really nice thread selection & cool toys from Clover. I actually showed a great deal of restraint, buying only the fabric I went for. (I will, however, be thinking of other projects soon, so fear not.)

Hope everyone has a lovely week!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Ne me quitte pas - squared...

Lindsey's at the DeKalb County Social Studies fair till late so I'm making one of these & watching The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. Yes, it's in French, but it's still good. (By the way, thanks to Sarah for giving me crafty ideas that I can do after work, with my brain on autopilot.)

This is THE song from the movie. The "ne me quitte pas" part, which translates literally as "don't leave me" is heart-wrenching.

Almost as heart-wrenching as this, the ultimate in French love songs. (Ignore that translation - it's rhymed to make it seem like a song, but you lose a lot of meaning.) Gahhhh - it's like Romeo & Juliet, it's so emotional. It's very smoky-cafe-in-the-50s, which could equally have been the 30s, with Hemingway brooding in the background. (Read The Sun Also Rises, & you'll get it, I promise.)

My favorite part:

Moi je t'offrirai (I will give you)
Des perles de pluie (The pearls of my tears)
Venues de pays (That come from places)
Ou il ne pleut pas (Where no one cries)
Je creuserai la terre (I will break the earth)
Jusqu'après ma mort (Even after my death)
Pour couvrir ton corps (To cover your body)
D'or et de lumière (With gold & light)
Je ferai un domaine (I will create a world)
Ou l'amour sera roi (Where love will be king)
Ou l'amour sera loi (Where love will be law)
Ou tu seras reine (Where you will be queen)

Explain to me why people aren't writing lyrics like THAT anymore. HMMMM?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


1) I got to meet Owen; he is darling.

2) This is sort of not even close to how pretty it is in our backyard:

Our neighbor has a tree whose leaves have turned translucent yellow, but I can't get a picture of them from outside, only through the window on the sunporch, and you can imagine how well that turned out.

3) For those of you lurking out there from New Orleans, you'll love the Bud's Broiler part of this, and I KNOW it will make you think of me. :) It will also make you cry. (That warning is for Caro, so she won't read this at work.)

Monday, November 26, 2007


Originally uploaded by splorp

I spent today in a cloud.

Literally. (Sort of like in this photo from flickr, posted above.)

Up on the 17th floor, the fog didn't burn off until about 2:30 p.m. Crazy. Then, I went to the parking garage where it looked like everything had been sprayed with a fire hose. Having barely touched the doors or handrails in the stairwells (as they were covered with clammy dew), I reached my car, which was completely fogged up. That made backing up in the TIGHT spots of the parking deck an adventure!

And there's a big story on the news that PLANES HAVE BEEN DELAYED!!! Travelers are STRANDED!! People are ANGRY!!!! How DARE the airlines do this????

Um, take a memo:
If there's zero visibility at the 17th floor (WAY lower than you want your plane to be flying), how in the world do you expect pilots to take off? Seriously. I'd much rather park my little self in a pleather airport chair than experience the joy of hearing a pilot say something like, "well, ladies & gentlemen, I can't actually see the runway, but we're going to give this a shot & see what happens!"

Sheesh. It's like the people that get mad that they stop serving drinks during turbulence. Oh, please, let's endanger the flight attendants so that I can have the privilege of your $8 cocktail dumping all over my lap when we hit an air pocket.

I understand that I have flown a lot, and that there are many people who do not fly often. However, this is all common sense. It's not even a businessman's travel secret like walking up the escalators, or in Atlanta, going to the farthest car on the little train.

Thank you for your patience. It is appreciated. As was the rain.

In other news, I get to meet Owen, my coworker's new son, tomorrow!

In other, other news, I am definitely in for the Carter Center's talk about the Gulag! Andy Young is supposed to be there, along with President Carter. I'm quite sure I'll be basically strip searched at the door. Entirely worth it, though, to hear what they have to say. It'll be one of those times that I want to hog-tie certain ungrateful students from my past, so they can understand what suffering is, and why they should be grateful for the MANY blessings they receive each day as citizens of this country, and recipients of free public education.

Finally this evening (whew), everyone must go see Dan in Real Life. It is amazing. LINDSEY EVEN LIKED IT, and I don't think that's happened ever for a movie we've seen in a theater. Fans of Little Miss Sunshine will appreciate that our favorite Proust scholar can actually play a variety of roles. There are just sort of an insane variety of very funny & very touching bits all wrapped up in a PLOT. An actual PLOT.

Further, it will make you want to obtain a beach house in Rhode Island. And for that, real estate agents all over the tiniest state in the Union are saying a big DANKE.

The decorations are 75% complete. The tree (ALUMINUM FOR REAL, YO) is up, but the ornaments aren't yet on it, so you can't have pictures. Soon, though, very soon.

Happy week, folks.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Weekly Rundown

-Monday: Archaeology
-Tuesday: Fight with the Georgia Department of Revenue
-Wednesday: Last minute shopping (IKEA!)
-Thursday: Lunch with Lindsey's mom & this fantastic movie (which I will blather on about in a later post, probably)
-Friday: Sweetwater Creek State Park, as suggested by the very astute Monkey & Bean
-Saturday: Up VERY early to hit the major sale at Scrap Chic, followed by fantastic Italian (new find - woohoo!)
-Sunday: Visit from our friend Alan, who's in flight school in Mississippi, church, birthday party, house decorating....

Moral of the story: it felt relaxing to do so much.

Hope everyone enjoyed their holiday - back to the cube in the morning.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Just in case you're wondering why Kinsley rocks:

Yesterday = Much More Fun Than Today

One of the perks of my new schwanky job (stop laughing) is the amazing people I get to meet. Last Friday, I had a tour of the museum at the Carter Library by none other than the director of said library. He was President Carter's Undersecretary of State for Energy Issues, or some such thing, & has an encyclopedic knowledge of the 2nd half of the 20th century. He also used to live in New Orleans (whoo-hoo!). Anyway, as we're touring, he mentions that a survivor of the Soviet gulag is coming to speak at the Library in December, which prompts an entirely juvenile reaction from me - something along the lines of "oh, please, please, please, please can I stand in the back? I promise to be very quiet & no one will know I'm there" - so he says he'll see what he can do. (Here's hoping it works out....)


The point of all that is to say that I've also met a very groovy chica named Terri who is an archaeologist for the state DOT. They're excavating a site up in Cherokee County for a new bridge, and they're finding AMAZING stuff. And she invited me to go up & "help!" So, I was able to spend 4 hours yesterday digging in the dirt. I personally got to touch lots of shards of pottery (some of which was stamped with beautiful designs), part of an ancient pipe bowl (this was their favorite - apparently it's rare to find these), chipped quartz from stone tools, ancient daub (mud made into adobe-like building material), & a clay bead. Then, I got to "help" with this cool gizmo that shoots ground-penetrating radar into the ground (duh) to look for soil irregularities that might point to additional "features." (Look at me & the lingo - we're friends!) Obviously, they were very nice people to let me "help," and it made me want to be an archaeologist for the first time since about the 3rd grade. Naturally, I didn't have to do any math (beyond measurement) or chemistry, which made it seem much more attractive than it would actually be.

This is what the area sort of looks like:

Only right now it is GORGEOUS because of all the foliage. (Melissa's current favorite word, I believe.)

ALL of this beats my fun morning today, spent at the Department of Revenue for the state, convincing them that yes, we did pay our state taxes, and we can prove it! We can prove it because we have a COPY OF THE CHECK THEY CASHED IN JUNE. Amazing. Then, I got to buy a wedding gift that I didn't really want to buy because the one I wanted to buy was not at all worth the money. Sheesh.

This is a warning: if you are getting married anytime within the next decade, you might just be getting a gift card. It doesn't mean we don't love you, it just means that I don't think the things on your registry are worth the money being charged for them.

That sounded ugly, but I meant it in the nicest possible way.

Onward to turkey day - yippe. ;(

Monday, November 19, 2007

Technicolor Trees #1

Technicolor Trees #1
Originally uploaded by sarahblascovich
Directions courtesy of the genius (also a Sarah!) over at the Misadventures of Mama & Jack, these trees are fantastically speedy to create. Melissa had the genius idea of using vinegar & food coloring to make the more vibrant blue & neon green trees. We had a LOT of fun making this little technicolor forest.

Mom, Dr. Erin, & I had a lot of fun at the McDonough Square holiday open house yesterday. There were a LOT of vintage goodies for the taking, but we managed to share the love in a mature fashion. ;) Once mother dearest returns the camera to me after its trip to Virginia, you might even get to see some pictures! You can see pictures from our favorite store here.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Swag from Jeannie - Installed!

Isn't this awesome? It came yesterday, all ready for next week. I LOVE it, and have decided to name Jean Knee as Queen of Craftiness.


In other news, I'm headed south, and will be seeing some of you very shortly - yippee! You have NO idea how excited I am....

Projects await!

Monday, November 12, 2007

she's back...

and sick.

The weeks of traveling, inadequate sleep, & crummy food have contributed, I'm sure.

Fortunately, today is a state holiday, so I'm working from home. (Thus the reason I'm up & posting before 8:00 a.m.) Hopefully, I can knock the illness out before I leave for Rome, um, TOMORROW. Yeah, right.

Fortunately again, that is only a one-night trip, and then I am h-o-m-e until January.

Moral of the story: I'm alive.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Please learn from our mistake:

when decorating with natural materials, be VERY cautious before putting them in your house. If, for example, you find some great-looking acorns, you might want to toast them in the oven JUST to make sure that little white wormy-looking things won't wriggle out of them onto your vintage tole tray.

This is the scene of the crime, restored to its previous blissful state via acorn removal activities.

We had a great weekend, and I am madly in love with the weather. Now, I get to leave it, & head down to south Georgia for the week. I'm sure when I get back it will be COLD, not just chilly, and the leaves will all have fallen off the trees. That's the way things tend to go around here.

In other excitement, the Halloween decorations are put away, and it's not even December yet. This is me turning over my new, highly-organized leaf. (I can hear all of you snickering, there's no need for that!)

This is the current version of the mantel for Thanksgiving. I really thought I had more vintage postcards with a harvest/fall theme, but obviously, I do not. I'll be on the prowl, so don't worry.

Have a great week - I'll be back within cell phone range on Friday. ;)

Sunday, October 28, 2007


Lindsey just did the "what European city" thing, and got Dublin. Not a surprise, either, since the kid likes to eliminate all non-Irish portions of his heritage. :)

Swap lovin', part deux...

And secondly, from Jeannie. Naturally, in a box covered with polka dots. This piece of the swap, friends, is a funny story. I thought it was a hat. Like a party hat, with the ribbon serving as the chin strap. The bat kept flapping down, and I thought, oh, the glue didn't stick, I'll have to put some more on. I WAS WALKING TO GET THE GLUE, when I turned it the OTHER way, and realized it was supposed to hang from the string. DUH. I felt dumb, and now I'm sharing that with you. This coolness looks perfecto on the front door, don't you think?

This cool cone, complete with fuzzy ball fringe & a jewel, was filled with delicious chocolate treats. Clearly, Jean Knee is a chocolate connoisseur. The Devilish Delight tag on the bony licorice stick is a trip. I put it right over a chair, but no one went running & screaming during the party. Apparently, it wasn't frightening enough. Sigh.... I'm thinking I might use the cone not just at Halloween, as long as I take out the hand? This thing is serious, by the way, Jeannie is a professional cone-maker, I think.

Mr. Friendly Skeleton, in his clowny jester outfit, gets to hang out with the festive muffin tins. He's quite funny, I think. The card (paper bag fabulousness) has an iron-on pumpkin that will have to get made into something here shortly. And I love the black kitty cat, of course. I think this one conveys the spirit of our cat immediately after the administration of flea medicine. Nice, huh?
Jean Knee rocks. This was awesome, and I get to keep having her as a partner for two more months! Whoo-hoo! Sweet goodness = fun stuff.

Swap lovin'...

Firstly, from Heidi:

The box came with the CUTEST witch graphic, but I don't know enough photo editing to show you that without showing you both of our addresses. And I refuse to gain a stalker, and I don't want to give Heidi a stalker who isn't named me. Thank you. :)

Inside, I found this mysterious package, which turned out to be a Happy Halloween swag, complete with ruffled crepe paper! Heidi was considerate enough to label the ends "right" & "left," which is important if you're spatially challenged like me. She even sent push-pins for attaching it to the wall! You can also see the soldered Scrabble tile necklace - she's getting very good at these. Check out her blog to see just how far she's come....

The swag, unfurled, on the mantel. It really pulls everything together, I think. And, we managed to hang it high enough to stay out of the reach of little hands during the par-tay last night. Lindsey helped me hang this, and was very impressed. I tried to use it to leverage a new (functional) printer, but I was not successful. Yet.

And, this, the magnificent swap container! Holy cow! The pieces of fabric on the handle are stamped with "trick or treat." Inside, Heidi sent a cool ghost cookie cutter, candy, Halloween sprinkles, treat bags, & muffin cups! She absolutely spoiled me, and I am very grateful for the hard work she put into this swap! Thanks also to Amy, for hosting this! YAY.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Ode to the Henley.

So we don't actually OWN this henley. But we do own about 4 just like it, waffle-weave, in a variety of colors (namely: red, charcoal, light blue, & hunter green). If decorum & the clothing rules of my workplace permitted it, you'd see me in one of these, jeans, hiking socks, & potato shoes pretty much every day all fall. (Winter, naturally, requires cable-knit sweaters, ideally of the turtle-necked variety, but that's another post for another day.)

The current ones in rotation are actually all "Lindsey's." Or, they were, until I confiscated them for my own personal use. I look better in them, anyway.

I actually left my wonderfully-chilly house (57 according to the thermometer - whoo-hoo! - I am my mother's daughter - why should you be able to feel your fingers & your nose?) for the Value Village to attempt to thrift some more, but apparently another henley-fan beat me to the punch, because I couldn't find ANY.

In case you can't tell, this personal style is clearly the result of being 13 in the midst of the Seattle-rock grunge era - thank goodness I've quit wearing flannel shirts OVER the henleys, right Mom? (hahah)

I gave up the henleys for a while, but they're back with a vengeance now.

Now, I promise, I am actually going to begin cooking for the par-tay tomorrow evening. Right.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Help needed, s'il vous plait.

#1) Let's take a moment, fellow Georgians, and be grateful for this rain.

#2) Anyone know where to find a LOT of buttons at a CHEAP price? As much as I *love* Etsy, I'm not paying $3.00 + shipping for 12 buttons! I need orange, green, and maybe brown. I tried google, failure ensued, and Ebay is too daunting. HELP!

#3) My swap packages are in the mail. That's a relief. I had some serious swap angst this go-round, and then a technical disaster in my trick or treat swap that had to be overcome.

#4) Lindsey is at church, which means I am about to whip up my very favorite bad-for-you processed food: Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, original version. Or, if you are Canadian, you call them Kraft Dinners, apparently. As usual, ignore the video (the car isn't even a Chrysler!), and listen while you surf.

When I saw BNL in New Orleans during my freshman year of college, they had boxes at all the entrances for the macaroni & cheese that people like to throw during this song. They asked that you deposit your box of mac & cheese for donation to a food bank rather than wasting it all over the arena. When I saw them later at Lakewood ( will NEVER be HiFiBuys to me), they didn't have the boxes. WHAT HAPPENED? People quit being hungry? I think not. I still love the band. Call me a loser.

Monday, October 22, 2007


This is what we call, not a shocker.

Thanks, Lennye, and by the way, you SHOULD give everyone a copy of The Family Under the Bridge. It is magical.

You Belong in Paris

You enjoy all that life has to offer, and you can appreciate the fine tastes and sites of Paris.
You're the perfect person to wander the streets of Paris aimlessly, enjoying architecture and a crepe.


Weather never comes when we need it. I think it's always been that way - read the Bible, or Little House on the Prairie. We have rain, and we need it desperately, but they need it in California, too. Barb, who hosts the Purse Project, lives in San Diego.

This is what weather can do:

I'm totally co-opting my friend Barrett's personal tragedy to make a philosophical point. It's all just stuff, right, Bear?

This is the result of Katrina, and the failure of a canal floodwall. Those, in case you don't know, are managed by the same Army Corps of Engineers that seems powerless to do anything to mitigate the effects of our drought. In both New Orleans and Atlanta, there is definitely an argument to be made that we've tried too hard to control the environment for our own purposes, and now its fighting back.

Nonetheless, at this point, the damage is done. We need to figure out more sustainable solutions for the long term, but we also need to plan for what the next few months will bring.

Can you tell I've been alone in the dark & dreary weather all afternoon? It's uplifting, isn't it?

This was all inspired by an NPR piece on the San Diego fires. They interviewed one lady, who was telling the few things she'd taken from her house at 4:30 this morning when she was told to evacuate. She listed the Bible, some pictures, clothes, jewelry, and get this - her grade book. That, friends, is dedication to the profession.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Not bright.

In a number of ways.

1) I've procrastinated on a presentation, and now I have to do it.
2) It was foggy all day - and we don't live in San Francisco!
3) I forgot to take pictures this afternoon, so you still can't see the crafty area, AND I have to go out of town tomorrow.

So, to brighten YOUR day, I think you should head over to the blog of my radical trick or treat swap partner, Heidi, and check out what she's been up to with her crafty self. I've very jealous of her newest talent, and you could actually benefit from it! Wowza, I tell you. Go! Go now! :)

Monday, October 15, 2007


Because I'm not 100% satisfied with the crafty area yet, you're going to have to be patient. To encourage patience, I've decided to show off our newly Halloweenish mantel. It's a mix of things we've bought, I've made, and gifts from my Mom, who's as into decorating for holidays as I am. Gee, wonder where it came from?
Lindsey thought it was quite funny that I left the wedding pictures up. He's threatening to tell people that we got married in October, just so it'll make sense. I guess that's better than telling people that our wedding was scary! (ha!) Towards the middle you can see two muffin tins that I gussied up for the season. I'm thinking about leaving them up through Christmas, & just changing out what's inside them. I bought them because they each have 8 cups instead of the usual 6 or 12. (See the close-up below...)

This is my "yard dog," straight from New Orleans. It came in very useful in the classroom, where my kids ALWAYS could remember the greater than & less than symbols. He also served as a very cool reward for good behavior. I've been told more than once that it's cruel to own this thing, but remember that alligator meat IS widely eaten in Louisiana, and using the head is WAY better than just throwing it away. Now, of course, he's outfitted for the season, courtesy of some creative cutting suggested by Lindsey. (I really hadn't planned to include him on the mantel.)

Some very productive scouring of the Value Village Halloween shelves resulted in these two lamps. The one on the right has a flickering bulb! They definitely crack me up. Who in the world invented them? They're crazy fun. It's like the plug-in candles you put in your window at Christmas - only for Halloween? People will buy anything! ;)

Anyway, that's enough showing off for one evening. Hope everyone is having a great start to the week!

Heureusement, IKEA est la!

Massive trippage to the IKEA. Massive. All in the name of getting this house ready for people to see it. Some results will be visible this evening. Stay tuned. All I'm telling you is that there is now a craft space. mwahahahahahah.

Monday, October 8, 2007


My very cool Holiday Sister Swap partner, Miss Jeannie (or Jean Knee, if you read her hysterical blog), sent me this happening card over the weekend. It is made out of a paper bag, and it rocks. At first, I decided I was going to send one of these to everyone I know. I was so determined on this front that I actually picked up a paper bag that had been carelessly tossed on the sidewalk while Lindsey & I were walking last night. (It did not, contrary to his expectations, contain any kind of illegal substance, or even smell like pot. So there.)

Then, I woke up, and looked around this extremely messy house, & realized that in order to have the Halloween party of the century on October 27th, I'd probably be better off cleaning that making cute cards.

In lieu of actually receiving a card, you can just admire this one, and maybe be inspired to make some of your own. (That's for those of you down in Jackson, enjoying your fall break...)

It's sitting on top of a very cool galvanized tub, that will be in action on the 27th, as well.

In case you haven't figured it out, this post serves only 2 purposes:
1) to thank Jeannie for this great card
2) to issue a save-the-date for the Halloween party of the century, on Saturday, October 27th, at 6:00 pm, chez nous. (Evite is forthcoming later in the week.)

Friday, October 5, 2007


I signed up for my former swap partner Amy's Trick or Treat Swap - and you can, too! Sign-ups close today, if you're interested. :)

Head over to Crafting by Candlelight.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


As you may recall, I joined Torrence on Sunday to see the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra's live recording of La Bohème. (I'd like to apologize to all French speakers for the lack of accent grave over the first "e." Blogger won't let me. Hmpf.) (ETA: My own personal computer geek, Barrett, sent me the html to get the accent. He's really something.) It was wonderful, particularly this aria. Listen to it first, then read the subtitles. Hysterical, really, how gorgeous it sounds till you realize what she's saying! Torrence & I were talking about how hard it is to read & listen simultaneously. I, being a gigantic dork, also am trying to pick out words that are the same in French & Italian.

On the way out of Symphony Hall, two guys were discussing whether or not this was superior to RENT. RENT is (loosely) based on La Boheme, and ends equally darkly. I cried at the end of both, surprise, surprise from the girl who cries at butter commercials. Anyway, I'll leave the final judgment up to you. Here is my favorite song from RENT. Does it stack up?

PSA: Ignore both videos. They detract from the music. Click on the links, & listen while you continue wasting time on the Internet. ;)

In other world news, it seems like maybe there won't be a revolution in Burma. It really seemed like they had a chance this time. If you haven't read the amazing story of Aung San Suu Kyi, you really should. It's inspiring. She basically redefines perseverance.

Locally, a small measure of success was achieved for the Metro environment by some angry folks. Stone Mountain, in the midst of the worst drought in a century, was using 38 gallons of water PER MINUTE to make enough ice to create a snow hill for this winter. They were stopped today by some quality AJC reporting, and angry citizens. Gives you a little faith in our country.

Monday, October 1, 2007

8 things I learned today:

1) Just because it's fall doesn't mean you can leave your car windows down overnight. Some kind individual will come by, ransack your car (you won't BELIEVE how much junk hides in your glove compartment), and take all your loose change. Fortunately, if you have recently stopped living out of your car, it's all they can take.

2) People who go through other people's cars do not like Norah Jones or 10,000 Maniacs. They leave those CDs alone.

3) When you think your cat has adjusted to being an indoor cat, she will stalk the door, waiting on you to open it, and then escape outside. Once outside, she will act as if she has no idea who you are, until you scare her back in the door.

4) Should you decide to go to the zoo to escape the very bad day you are having, you may encounter rude people, who shove their cameras in front of you in order to take a picture of an animal they can see equally well from their portion of the fence.


5) Baby pandas take extremely precious naps at about 4:00 in the afternoon. They collapse over horizontal poles, with their legs dangling. Amazing. (The picture up there is a not-very-close approximation.)

6) Meerkats like to watch people. Particularly if one meerkat is on guard, and the others are combing their hair.

7) Girl lions chase & antagonize boy lions, who in turn play hard to get.

8) Elephants dance! Really! They wave their ears back & forth & shift their weight. Very cool for something that weighs 14,000 pounds.

I've decided that I came out ahead on the lessons front, particularly in regards to the car. I am actually quite famous for leaving the window down, but before my only consequence has been a car seat wet from dew (or rain). Maybe now I'll remember?

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Fall comes to the city - and the kitty.

Last night, we were *finally* able to sleep with the windows open. (I'll spare you the saga of the search for expandable, removable window screen. Just know that I prevailed, and we own them.) Our poor cat, who has had to become an indoor kitty since we moved into Atlanta, did not sleep. She went from one window to the next, and the instant she heard an acorn hit the porch, or the leaves rustle in the bushes, she jumped off the bed & ran to investigate. I do feel bad that she can't run & play outside, & enjoy the weather, but at least she'll get to sit in the window for a month or so.

I spent Wednesday through yesterday at noon in Athens. We went out for dinner in downtown Athens (home of the University of Georgia) on Thursday night, and it was so funny to watch the extremely dressed-up freshmen ready for a night on the town. Caro would have especially enjoyed that the boys were dressed up in KHAKIS. (gasp) I keep telling her it's an SEC thing, but she just doesn't get it. ;)

Further entertainment was provided by huge clumps of sorority pledges, ridiculously dressed so as to humiliate them. Now, I will own my sorority membership with semi-pride, but I was NEVER, and I do mean NEVER, forced to look ridiculous or behave stupidly to join. I wouldn't have stood for it, and neither would most of my pledge class. (There were three or four girls who WANTED to be hazed, but we weren't really friends, being as they were, quite simply, insane.)

I was a little jealous that all of them (I'm sure) were headed over to Sanford Stadium this afternoon to watch UGA beat Ole Miss. It is perfect football weather, bringing to mind this fantastic song. Ignore the video (unless you want to reflect on the deeper meaning of this song as sung by a Lousiana band (LSU kids, in fact) in relation to last season's Saints' post-Katrina success as New Orleans' team). I'll quit before I cry. And before I use any more parentheses-within-parentheses. BTE used to play every Lundi Gras at Tipitina's uptown, and it was always an amazing show. (At least it was the two times I went.)

Last night, we went over to East Atlanta Village for dinner, dessert, and a visit to the local bookstore. (Not to be confused with these less-local bookstores.) It was lovely.

I. Love. Fall.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Swap partner answers

Yep, I joined another Sweet Goodness Swap. (That's the same lovely group that linked me up with Amy for the Summer Fun Swap.) This time around, I'm paired with Jeannie, whose blog is a riot. Check it out. We'll be trading three seasonal surprises, so that should be exciting. It's like having a secret pal at school, only I know who my partner is. :) Part of our assignment is to answer these questions below. Being as I know I'll forget to do this if I don't do it now, here goes nothing:

1. Favorite Color: red, or this particular shade of green
2. Chocolate Lover? Milk, Dark, White, or none of the above? All. Thank you. The end.
3. What is your favorite craft hobby? Anything involving paper, or sewing that only requires straight seams.
4. What is a craft/art hobby that you would like to start? knitting - finally bought some needles
5. What craft do you NOT have an interest in or just not great in ( so your partner doesn’t send something you wouldn’t use)? drawing that is supposed to look like something
6. Do you have any allergies? (we don’t want to send anything with peanuts if it’ll make you blow up like a balloon!) green vegetables & the vacuum cleaner
7.What’s your favorite part of Halloween? Decorating, candy eating, costumes, or something else? decorating & eating candy simultaneously - I'm in about my 9th year of the Dorothy costume with red Converse high-tops for ruby slippers
8. Do you decorate for Thanksgiving/Fall? absolutely - I turn the jack o'lanterns around so they just look like pumpkins
9. December Holidays--what holiday do you celebrate? What type of decorations do you like to put up in your house for that holiday? Christmas - we decorate anything that will stand still. I have a vintage aluminum tree w/vintage ornaments, a small tree in the kitchen with utensil/food ornaments, and a regular tree. I love vintage holiday things, especially when I find them cheap.
10. Do you have any children, if so what are their ages, boys/girls? Nope.
11. Do you have any pets, if so what kind? One black cat - she's our Halloween mascot.
12. Are you a reader? If so, what type of books do you like? I read everything, including shampoo bottles & cereal boxes. If it has type, I must read it. At the moment, I'm on a "biographies of average people" kick, but that could end at any time, if the right new thing came along...
13. Are you celebrating a birthday or anniversary in October, November, or December? If so, what day and what is the occasion? Nyet.
14. Do you collect anything? If so what type of things do you collect? Oy. I collect a variety of old stuff for the kitchen, including red-handled utensils, aprons & linens, and metal cookie cutters.
15. What type of things do you like to cook? Are you an appetizer person, cookie maker, dessert freak or a take out type of person?? I love to bake, particularly sweet things, but I'm developing some bread skills.
16. What is your favorite scent? Is there one that you can’t stand? I pretty much love all "good" smells, especially things that smell like cookies! I don't like those fragrances that are dangerously close to smelling like public bathroom disinfectant.
17. What’s your favorite song? Geek alert! "Ne me quitte pas," by Jacques Brel. In English, probably "In My Life," by the Beatles, or "Dancing Virginia," by Jump Little Children
18. What’s the last movie you went to see at the movie theater? I can't even remember, but I think it was Knocked Up, which I saw with my mother-in-law, tee hee.
19. What’s your favorite Candy? Junior Mints. No, wait. Rolos? Or maybe Reese's Pieces? Those new dark chocolate 3 Muskateers are good, too... Oh, and there's Sixlets, which are increasingly hard to find.
20. Tea or Coffee or other? OTHER - milk. Or root beer. Or beer. Or good white wine.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Community Service Post

In honor of Monkey's love of organizational products: I don't know if this is true at CVS stores everywhere, but ours here in the hood had all back-to-school stuff 75% off last night. For all of you teachers, they had a set of 5 Sterilite plastic shoeboxes (you know, the size we use for EVERYTHING), originally $5.99, that came out to about $1.70. We only bought one set, but I may have to go back for more today.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

I am not bright.


#1) I did not take the camera to breakfast this morning, so I have no cute baby pictures for you. The baby is, however, precious, and laughs & smiles ALL the time. He smiled more at me than at Lindsey, thank you very much.
#2) The La Boheme concert is NEXT weekend. Duh. Fortunately, I don't think I've double-booked us.
#3) The wedding in October to which I did not think we were invited? Yeah, we're invited. Fortunately, I have a dress. What we do not have is a gift, or an idea for a good one.

I think it's time for some M&M's. Have you seen the cute Halloween ones with jack o'lantern faces? They make me quite happy...

Friday, September 21, 2007

Some people think I'm funny...

Today's group of trainees thought I was hysterical. I'm thinking maybe they just don't have access to a lot of funny people? After all, we know that Nat is the funny one. ;) They were, seriously, an awesome group, & received the information we were presenting really well. Yahoo!

This weekend, I get to go & see La Boheme with Torrence. I'm very excited. We are, however, going with his friends from the Georgia Tech orchestra. That means, I'll be outsmarted on all fronts. Normally, I feel only slightly inferior around Tech people because I never made it to Calc 47. These folks made it through Calc 47, AND play music. They play well - I've heard them. Torrence is the one, of course, who is getting his PhD in biomedical engineering, and trying to win Tech's concerto competition. Again. This time, on a new instrument. Yeah.

Crazy weekend here, trying to visit some folks and get ready for my next week of travel. I'll be in Cobb for Tuesday, then on to Athens for the rest of the week. Then, I'm off for a week, before finishing this training round up in Rome & Gainesville. I'm quite ready for a break.

Have a great weekend. Hopefully, I'll be back tomorrow with some cute baby pictures.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Gratitude, redux.

In light of all that's gone on in Lennye's world this week, I'm feeling more than a little grateful. Even though it took me 5 and a half hours to get home last night, in the rain, I couldn't help but notice how pretty so much of the drive was. And then, today, I was thrilled to discover that the rain had brought us our first taste of fall.

Moral of the story: be thankful for the little stuff. Jenn had actually reminded me of this when I was visiting her in Sylvester. While we were discussing the struggles that living in Worth County has created for her, she told me that she wakes up every morning & drives to work in awe of the sunrise she sees over the cotton fields. That, she said, helps her. As usual, I listened to that girl. And it served me well.

Happy Saturday night.

Merci, Amy!

You Belong in 1953

You're fun loving, romantic, and more than a little innocent. See you at the drive in!
What Year Do You Belong In?

I've know this for a long time... ;)

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

So THIS is what people do early in the morning...

A happier post, to apologize for the previous one.

This afternoon, the Saturn will be transporting yours truly to Augusta, & then onward later in the week to Savannah. I've never actually been to Augusta, so that should be exciting. I always love Savannah. Since I'm on the work schedule, I got up early to finish getting some things together for the trip.

This is what I saw when I looked up from the back porch where I ate breakfast. Pretty cool, huh? I became, um, slightly obsessed with light the year that I lived in France. Paris gets ZERO light in the winter, so when Caro & I ventured south, almost to the Mediterranean, in January, we thought we were in heaven.

My winter light obsession is part of the reason Lindsey & I were married in January. (Well, the light & the fact that I sweat a lot, & wedding dresses are heavy.)

Anyway, the camera's batteries have been fully recharged, so that all sorts of picture-taking fun can be had in Savannah. And, maybe Augusta - who knows?

Six years ago today...

... I woke up to my roommate screaming as she watched her morning news show, live from New York. Can you believe it's been that long?

Monday, September 10, 2007

Hilarious. Truly.

We've all done this forward before, but it still cracks me up. Feel free to play along.

1. YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: (first pet & current car) Goldie Saturn

2.YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (fave ice cream flavor, favorite cookie) Mint Chocolate Lorna Doone (not as cool as Timbaland, for sure)

3. YOUR “FLY Guy/Girl” NAME: (first initial of first name, first three letters of your last name), S-Bro, which beats my maiden fly-girl name: S-Bla

4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal), Red Tamarin

5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born), Anne Bryn Mawr (no joke)

6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first), Bro-Sa (again, WAY outdoing Bla-Sa)

7. SUPERHERO NAME: (”The” + 2nd favorite color, favorite drink), The Pink Milk (isn't that for upset tummies?!?!)

8. NASCAR NAME: (the first names of your grandfathers), Walter Albert (unlike their middle names, Harrison Lawrence, which sounds like a Hemingway-esque novelist)

9. WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother’s & father’s middle names ), Anne Albert

10. TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME: (5th grade teacher's last name + a city in the world that begins with the same letter), Locke London

11. SPY NAME: (your favorite season/holiday, flower). Winter Freesia (let's be honest - way more like a woman of the night than a woman sneaking through the night)

12. CARTOON NAME: (favorite fruit, article of clothing you’re wearing right now + “ie” or “y”) Cantaloupe Jeansie (DUMB, DUMB, DUMB)

13. HIPPIE NAME: (What you ate for breakfast, your favorite tree), Biscuit Oak (??)

14. YOUR ROCKSTAR TOUR NAME: (”The” + Your fave hobby/craft, fave weather element + “Tour”), The Reading Wind Tour (we won't discuss what that sounds like)

Give it a shot! It's fun.

Sunday, September 9, 2007


Here you have it: Kimono Pillow #1. Thanks to the great folks at Kyoto Kimono, who recycle damaged kimonos into fabric scraps for crafters. I think the grey striped piece is most of a sleeve. What's really amazing is that the few pieces that are still sewn - everything is done by hand. This is very slippery fabric, so I am very impressed. Kimono Pillow #2 is ready to be stitched, but I just didn't feel like getting out the iron today. I'm also learning that making these to fit a pre-formed pillow would be a really good idea. Stuffing this sucker was zero fun. It also takes a lot more stuffing than you might think. I'm envisioning some yo-yo embellished pillows in the near future. You might recall the original kimono yo-yo experiment. Some progress has been made since those first attempts.

In other news, our pastor cited a Jump, Little Children song during her sermon today. Cathedrals, to be specific. Our little section of the church had a momentary fit, since we're all about the same age. Lindsey & I had the privilege of accompanying Torrence (soon-to-be-Dr. Welch) to their farewell tour show here in Atlanta at the Variety two years ago. It brought back good memories - back when Napster wouldn't get you thrown in jail, sophomore year, writing papers WAY too late in the dorm... (It was a good sermon, too, dwelling on showing the love of the church to others, rather than scaring or goading them into/toward salvation. It's why I'm Methodist, these days.) Did I mention they have a CELLO in the band???? Sigh....

You can do this too! Thanks to my newest swap partner, Jeanetta, for the link!

I am recovering nicely from my trip to south Georgia. The trainings went well, people were nice, and we discovered a great Mexican place in Waycross with equally great drink specials. I also got to visit with Jenn & Harris, and absorb some of the craziness that is football coaching. In the interest of privacy, I won't share the stories here, but let's just say their life jumps from one extreme to another, in this case, all within a few hours. I was exhausted just watching.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend - more typing later. :)

Monday, September 3, 2007

Intermediate Posting

Since I don't have the infamous picture of me WITH Jimmy Carter yet, I thought I'd tempt you with a few of the man himself:Here he is speaking to the Japanese students. He was pretty funny, actually, and made a few jokes about how Plains is TINY. He said it had 635 people. I'm not sure where about 450 of them live, so that might be the greater Plains metropolitan area.

Here are President Carter, the Superintendent of the visiting Japanese school system, and the translator. The translator worked HARD for his money; virtually no one spoke English in the group, so even simple things like "leave your bags in this room, so the Secret Service doesn't have to search them" took a LONG time to explain.

And the bike... As you can see, this is no titanium, German-engineered racing bike. In fact, I think it is older than I am. (However, the agent riding with him DID appear to have a fancy bike.) He rides very well, you'll be happy to know.

In other fun, here are some pictures of Lindsey with the Rhino. They had a lot of fun opening Ryan's present & reading a book. Much like our house, the book contains Ryan's favorite word, "mess." ;)

As of this weekend, we are now proud members of the High Museum of Art and Zoo Atlanta. I FINALLY got to see the baby panda, Mei Lan, for about 12 seconds until I was smushed by a bunch of adults with large cameras. Sheesh. She turns one on Thursday, so hopefully after that, the crowds will die down. (She is very cute, and quite a ham. She also appears quite healthy, so maybe soon she'll get to hang out with both of her parents. They are still separated most of the time.)

In other excitement, I'm on my way in about an hour to south Georgia, where I'll be training teachers in Pelham and Waycross. Go swapiness! I will get to see Jenn, who lives down that way in Sylvester. Her husband is the high school football coach there; the Rams won on Friday night. Whoo-hoo!

I'm still in the middle of a few kimono-fabric pillows; hopefully, I'll get those finished next weekend so you can see them. Happy Labor Day!